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Preview: RB Leipzig vs. SC Paderborn - prediction, team news, lineups

:Headline: Preview: RB Leipzig vs. SC Paderborn - prediction, team news, lineups:
Sports Mole previews Saturday's Bundesliga clash between RB Leipzig and SC Paderborn, including team news and predicted lineups.

RB Leipzig will be looking to make it three wins from their five matches since the Bundesliga resumed in the middle of May when they host bottom side SC Paderborn on Saturday afternoon.

Julian Nagelsmann's side currently sit third in the table, just two points off second-placed Borussia Dortmund, although they are nine behind leaders Bayern Munich on the same number of matches.


Match preview

Monday's 4-2 success at Koln extended Leipzig's unbeaten run in the Bundesliga to 10 matches, while they have only lost once in Germany's top flight since the end of October, which is an indication of the size of the task facing Paderborn on Saturday afternoon.

A total of 58 points from 29 matches has left Leipzig in third spot in the table, two points off second-placed Dortmund but nine behind the leaders and champions Bayern.

It is difficult to imagine Bayern dropping enough points to allow Nagelsmann's side to challenge for the title, but there is no question that they will have their eyes on Dortmund in second position.

Die Roten Bullen have beaten Mainz 05 and Koln since the Bundesliga resumed in the middle of May, although they have been held by both Freiburg and Hertha Berlin.

Too many draws (10) have cost Leipzig the chance to be higher up the table at this stage, but the club's supporters will be feeling confident ahead of Saturday's contest against the league's basement side.

A third-tier outfit as recently as 2018, Paderborn secured back-to-back promotions to return to the Bundesliga for the current season, but there is no getting away from the fact that it has been a struggle for the club.

Indeed, a total of just 19 points from 29 matches has left them rock bottom, some eight points off 16th-placed Fortuna Dusseldorf and nine points behind Mainz in 15th position.

Something drastic will have to happen for Steffen Baumgart's side to turn the tide, but the team's confidence is likely to be low following a 6-1 home defeat to Dortmund last weekend.

Paderborn had actually drawn three straight matches against Dusseldorf, Hoffenheim and Augsburg heading into the clash with BVB, but they were brought crashing back down to earth by Lucien Favre's side.

The newly-promoted club gave a good account of themselves in the reverse fixture with Leipzig earlier this season, though, only narrowly losing 3-2 to Nagelsmann's side at the end of November.

Leipzig Bundesliga form: DDDWDW
Leipzig form (all competitions): DWDWDW

Paderborn Bundesliga form: LLDDDL


Team News

Leipzig will again be unable to call upon Kevin Kampl, Yussuf Poulsen, Ibrahima Konate, Ethan Ampadu or Fabrice Hartmann for Saturday's contest.

The home side did not pick up any fresh injury concerns against Koln on Monday, though, and it would not be a surprise to see the same XI sent onto the field.

Dani Olmo's goal and impressive performance could see the Spaniard keep his spot in a wide area, while Timo Werner is again expected to be joined by Patrik Schick in the final third of the field.

As for Paderborn, Luca Kilian is still on the sidelines with a thigh problem, while Jamilu Collins will miss out through suspension due to the yellow card he picked up against Dortmund.

Collins's absence could open the door for Laurent Jans to feature, while Baumgart is likely to consider alterations further forward with the likes of Ben Zolinski and Kai Proger both in contention.

Leipzig possible starting lineup:
Gulacsi; Mukiele, Klostermann, Upamcecano, Angelino; Olmo, Sabitzer, Laimer, Nkunku; Schick, Werner

Paderborn possible starting lineup:
Zingerle; Drager, Strohdiek, Hunemeier, Jans; Zolinski, Srbeny, Schonlau, Vasiliadis, Anti-Adjej; Mamba


We say: Leipzig 3-0 Paderborn

Interestingly, Paderborn have picked up more points on their travels (11) than at home (8) this season, but it is incredibly difficult to make a case for the strugglers this weekend. Leipzig have only lost one of their 14 home Bundesliga fixtures this term, and we fancy Nagelsmann's side to pick up another three points.


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Bundesliga Table
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
CBayern MunichBayern342644100326882
2Borussia DortmundDortmund34216784414369
3RB Leipzig341812481374466
4Borussia MonchengladbachBorussia M'bach34205966402665
5Bayer LeverkusenB. Leverkusen35197962451764
6Hoffenheim34157125353052
7Wolfsburg341310114846249
8Freiburg34139124847148
9Eintracht FrankfurtFrankfurt34136155960-145
10Hertha Berlin34118154859-1141
11Union BerlinUnion Berlin34125174158-1741
12Schalke 04Schalke35913133959-2040
13Augsburg35109164663-1739
14Mainz 0535114204466-2237
15FC Koln34106185169-1836
16Werder Bremen3487194269-2731
RFortuna DusseldorfDusseldorf34612163667-3130
RSC PaderbornSC Paderborn3448223774-3720
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5Manchester UnitedMan Utd341610859332658
6Wolverhampton WanderersWolves351413848371155
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8Tottenham HotspurSpurs351410115445952
9Arsenal35121495144750
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12Southampton34135164356-1344
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14Crystal Palace35119153045-1542
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16West Ham UnitedWest Ham3597194459-1534
17Watford35810173354-2134
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